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In-depth reviews

Volkswagen e-up! (2019-2022) review

The Volkswagen e-up! electric city car was given a mid-life nip-and-tuck in 2019, including a bigger battery that substantially improved its range

Overall rating

3.5 out of 5

Pros

  • Grown-up driving experience
  • Decent real-world range
  • Excellent visibility

Cons

  • Interior quality not the best
  • No infotainment system
  • Cable storage is poor
Car typeRangeWallbox charge timeRapid charge time
Electric159 miles5hrs 30mins (0-100%, 7.2kW)48mins (10-80%, 30kW)

Volkswagen now has a fairly comprehensive line-up of electric vehicles, but the e-up! was one of the first out of the gates back in 2014. Although the latest version of didn't change much externally from the original, the more energy-dense 36.8kWh battery introduced in 2019 was a significant improvement over the previous 18.7kWh one, boosting claimed range up to 159 miles.

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While a 0-62mph time of 12 seconds doesn’t sound particularly impressive, the instant torque that the electric motor delivers means the e-up! feels much faster and more fun than you’d expect. For a car of its size, the e-up! is surprisingly spacious inside, but its spartan dashboard feels outdated, with just a basic smartphone cradle instead of a touchscreen infotainment setup.

As is the case with most Volkswagen models, you’ll find build quality is good, but rivals like the Honda e and MINI Electric offer a more upmarket feel and much more kit as standard. That said, those models do come at a far higher price and don’t offer any more practicality or space than the cleverly packaged e-up! does.

Along with its sister models the Skoda Citigo-e iV and SEAT Mii electric, the Volkswagen e-up! has now been discontinued, but any one of the three can make for a good-value secondhand electric-car choice if you're in the market. For a more detailed look at the Volkswagen e-up!, read on for the rest of our in-depth review...

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Richard is editor of DrivingElectric, as well as sister site Carbuyer.co.uk, and a regular contributor to Auto Express. An electric and hybrid car advocate, he spent more than five years working on the news and reviews desk at Auto Express and has driven almost every new car currently on sale.

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